The greatest gift and curse in the world is imagination.

If one imagines good things, life will be open to possibilities.

If one imagines bad things, life will become prison-like.

Let’s say you want to make a business deal, notice where your imagination goes.

  • Are the patrons angry?
  • Do they you’re unqualified?
  • Do they say your idea has no potential?

Or

  • Are the patrons indifferent?
  • Are they mildly intrigued?
  • Do they offer you advice or a connection?

However, what happens when you hold contradictory imaginations?

This is quite the bind!

On one hand, you want to imagine something positive. On the other hand, you can’t help imagining something negative.

The answer is hope – as ridiculous as that sounds.

“There are moments when encouragement is needed, because to change—and to change totally—is not an easy job. Many times the mind wants to fall back into its old patterns, old habits; therefore, the commune. The commune is not an alternative society. It is not another organization, it is something totally new. It is a loving togetherness of fellow travelers who are all working on themselves. But five thousand people all working on themselves create an atmosphere of great encouragement—you are not alone. And if five thousand people are trying, there is hope. You can see people ahead of you, you can see people behind you—on all the rungs of the ladder. That makes it clear that human beings just like you are carving the way, changing themselves. It becomes an individual challenge for you not to be a coward and fall back into old habits. You cannot fall back into old habits because five thousand people are watching you and they are very optimistic about you. They have great hopes for you; they see that the sunrise is not far away. Yes, it is very dark right now, but to find the light you need not go back. To find light you have to go forward. The darker the night, the closer is the morning, and a few have reached the morning. You can see the sunlight in their eyes, you can see the flowers of their being blossoming. You can feel the fragrance that is released. So it is only a question of a little more patience, a little more courage. “

Osho, Living on Your Own Terms: What is Real Rebellion?

“The ability to think ‘The sky is the limit!’ is an excellent tool in your mental toolbox. However, there does need to be an element of realism in your thinking, though not one that overly limits you. You need to find the right balance. If you only think ‘The sky is the limit!’, then your head will be full of crazy daydreams, but when you look around at your life and see the huge disparity between your dreams and your current situation, you may experience guilt, disappointment and distress. You’ll blame yourself, or you might become bitter and blame everybody else.

All this can be avoided by defining success for yourself in a way that’s process-oriented, and which focuses on taking action and on enjoying the journey of life. This focus should take into account inner fulfilment, not just quantifiable financial success (which will never be 100 per cent in your control).

Rather than ignore both schools of thought, we’d like to offer a third way of thinking. We call it a Reality-Growth Mindset.

A reality-growth mindset is the ability to accept the hard limits of the way things are (like the physical laws of the universe) and also to believe that anything is possible (the metaphysical way of looking at the universe). It acknowledges that there are limitations, but that those limitations are more malleable than some people may think.”

Ash Ali & Hasan Kubba, The Unfair Advantage

[Image by Greg Montani from Pixabay]

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